Help Me Turn a UFO into an IFO

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Photo taken with a Nikon D5000 with a 200 mm zoom lens. This is a 200 x 200 px section of the original 2144 × 1424 px image.

At a dark sky star party, something appeared in the northern sky around 7pm on Oct. 1 that looked like a bright star very near the position of Polaris. It was far too bright to be Polaris or any other star so early; it was in the wrong part of the sky to be a planet, and unlike a satellite, it was stationary. It faded from view after about 10 – 20 minutes. I took the above photograph at 7:08 pm Mountain Time, and someone who looked at the object through binoculars confirmed that the double-lobed structure seen in this photograph is real.

We developed two hypotheses about what this object might have been

  1. A weather balloon
  2. A geosynchronous satellite

If any of my astronomically-inclined friends could offer some help in identifying this object, I would appreciate it.

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One Response to Help Me Turn a UFO into an IFO

  1. Pingback: Help Me Turn a UFO into an IFO, Part 2 | Great are the Works of the Lord

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